The Fit Life, LLC

Monday, March 4, 2013

10 “Weird” Things I Do for My Health



10 “Weird” Things I Do for My Health
(Well, many friends and family think they are weird. To me, they are just no-brainers)


1.       Dry Skin Brushing. Before I shower, I brush my skin with a natural bristled brush. It has many benefits to your health. To read about the benefits of dry skin brushing, you can read a previous blog I wrote: http://www.jjkunkle.blogspot.com/2010/12/do-what-to-my-what.html

2.       Oil Pulling. This is a new one I just started. You place about a teaspoon of organic, unrefined coconut oil in your mouth, and for five to twenty minutes you pull the oil through your teeth. Again, tremendous benefits to your health. Read more here: http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/natural-health/oil-pulling/

3.       I take Bio-Identical Hormones. I’m amazed at how many people (including doctors) don’t know about Bio-Identical Hormones. I encourage everyone (male and female) to read about them. They can change your life. I take Progesterone and Testosterone because my levels are very low. The low levels cause fatigue, fuzzy headedness, headaches, insomnia and lack a libido to name just a few symptoms. I’m not menopausal yet, so my Estrogen levels are fine. But as I enter menopause, I will also use Bio-Identical Estrogen. The Progesterone is a naturally compounded oral medication. The Testosterone is a small pellet that’s inserted under the skin every few months (it varies depending on the person). The only downside, it that you can’t exercise for three days after the insertion. So I try to always schedule my appointments on Friday (so I can teach my classes). Here’s an explanation from the doctor I use: http://youagain.net/id50.html.

4.        I use all natural deodorant. There are two big reasons I do this: First, I believe the aluminum in commercial antiperspirants are dangerous, and are absorbed into the skin. Second, sweating is one of the ways our body gets rid of toxins. It’s not natural to block one of the major sweat zones. I want to sweat out those toxins!

5.       The only thing I use on my skin is organic coconut oil (the same coconut oil I cook with and do the oiling pulling with). It goes back to the toxins in #4. Our skin is our biggest organ. It takes in toxins and it gets rid of toxins. I don’t want to absorb a bunch of chemicals into my skin (body) any more than I want to eat chemicals.

6.       I’m trying very hard to cut dairy out of my diet. Despite years of the United Dairy Council telling us “it does a body good,” I do not believe the human body is meant to digest cows’ milk. We are meant to drink our mother’s breast milk for the first year or so of life, after that milk is not a necessary part of our diet. I use unsweetened almond milk for recipes that call for milk, and I’ve switched to a coconut milk creamer. I haven’t managed to cut cheese out yet. I know I should, but I’m just not ready yet. A person can get plenty of calcium from leafy greens—and in fact—from what I’ve read the body absorbs calcium better when it’s not from an animal product. I believe by giving up dairy (and meat), I will have a better shot at avoiding the osteopenia/osteoporosis that runs in my family.

7.       As much as possible I eat whole, unprocessed foods. And I’m trying my best to eliminate processed carbohydrates (sugar, bread, cereal, pasta, white rice, instant/quick oats) out of my diet. Our bodies want whole, natural foods. And the more I cut out the bad stuff, the more my body rejects them when I eat them. I won’t claim to be perfect. Sometime a person just wants a bowl of pasta or a sandwich. But on a daily basis, I do the best I can. If I eat a sandwich I use sprouted, whole grain bread. If I eat pasta, I find the pasta with a lot of fiber.

8.       I’m vegetarian except for the occasional fish dish. I feel eating vegetarian (plus fish) is the right choice for me. I have more energy. My digestion is so much better than it was in my meat-eating days. And I have to say, anyone who has watched Food Inc., and still eats grocery store or fast food chicken, is far braver than I will ever be. If I was ever to go back to eating chicken, it would have to come from a farm I’ve visited, so I can see how the chickens live. And while I don’t preach vegetarianism to my friends (it’s a free world), I do totally believe we could eradicate heart disease (cholesterol problems) in this world, if people switched to a plant based diet. The only foods we eat that contain cholesterol are animal products. If we only dealt with the cholesterol that naturally occurs in our bodies, Lipitor would never be needed.

9.       I question and research any drug that is ever prescribed. If it is not absolutely necessary, I will not take it. I’m sure my doctor’s love me (not). But if there is a natural way of curing something—or a lifestyle changes that will help a health problem—that’s the route I’m going to take. I took harsh prescriptions for migraines for years. Finally, I’m off all of them. I now take 250mg of magnesium a day to prevent them. I still get a mild one each month, but they are nothing like they use to be (I believe hormone balance also plays a role in that). I’ll add to this one that if I hear of something natural with great health benefits, I’ll totally try it. I just started fermenting my own Kombucha because I’ve heard it has great health benefits. I switched out those energy gels runners use with Chia seeds soaked in water. They are a completely natural energy gel.  I’m also going to start “growing” my own kefir (but with either coconut water or almond milk rather than dairy milk) because the probiotics in it are supposed to be outstanding—much greater than the probiotics in yogurt. I also refuse to use anything but organic soil and my own organic compost in my garden. No chemical fertilizers or pesticides for me! I just want the veggies!

10.   Finally, I exercise a lot. My situation is a bit unique—I get paid to exercise—so that helps. I teach an average of ten fitness classes a week. Now granted, I don’t do everything in every class. If I did, I’d wear my body down too much—and wouldn’t have anything left for my own training. So I slack a bit when I teach boot camps and TRX (I do enough to get my own strength training in). But with classes like indoor cycling and kickboxing, I do the whole class with them. I also have my own running and cycling goals, so it’s important that I have enough time in my schedule to dedicate training to those sports. It’s hard work and sometimes I’m just plain tired, but it’s also what makes me feel alive. I love to sign up for races that scare me just a little bit (Tough Mudder, Mountain Century races) because I know I will train hard for them. It’s a huge high for me. I have trouble understanding people who have no passion for exercise or the outdoors. I’m not saying I expect everyone to love running or biking, but certainly there is something active you can have a passion for to keep your body healthy and strong (not skinny—healthy and strong).
And there you have it—ten things I have often been called “weird” for doing.  I could probably keep going, but that should do it for now. How about you? Are you weird?

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I am the owner of The Fit Life, LLC. The Fit Life, LLC offers fitness instruction and nutrition counseling in a holistic way. I focus on personal training using mainly your own body strength--very little equipment. I also hold a certification in holistic nutrition. Because nutrition counseling regulations are very strict in Ohio, I'm still working on what nutrition services I can provide to my clients; however, I'm happy to provide general nutrition information. I enjoy teaching TRX, Indoor Cycling, and Boot Camps.

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